Harvey Mudd College in the USA is one of the most competitive Liberal Arts Universities to earn admission into for international undergraduate candidates. This essay / blog from their undergraduate admissions interns is insightful for international senior students in Year 13 or Grade 12 currently applying to US universities and can help guide them when using the CommonApp system to apply.
November 8, 2019
About 4,000 of you are out there, thinking about that “why Mudd?” question on our application. For those of you who are applying ED, your thoughts are due in just a week from today! In the spirit of collaboration and peer tutoring, we’ve asked the senior interns why they chose Mudd and what’s surprised them about their experience here.
Hometown: New York, NY
High school: High School for Math Science and Engineering at City College of New York
Major: Computer Science and Mathematics Joint Major
Why Mudd?: I chose Mudd because I wanted to attend a school with a strong STEM curriculum where I wouldn’t have to give up my interests in humanities and the arts (but also: the weather).
What surprised you about Mudd?: I was really surprised by how welcoming everyone was from the moment I arrived on campus!
Hometown: McLean, VA
High school: Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology
Major: Physics (Astrophysics option)
Why Mudd?: I chose Mudd largely because of the small community – I felt like I could be an engaged member of the student body and impact the school for the better. Also, I wanted to be surrounded by scientifically-minded peers who still understood the value of a strong background in humanities.
What surprised you about Mudd?: I was surprised by how friendly everyone was, and how much my peers and professors wanted to see me succeed here. Even though I heard that this would be the case when I was first looking at Mudd, it wasn’t until I started meeting the people here that it really sunk in for me!
Hometown: Seattle, WA
High school: Lakeside School
Major: Mathematical and Computational Biology and Theater
Why Mudd?: I was first drawn to Mudd because of the academic opportunities. I loved the fact that I could study STEM without giving up all of the humanities classes I wanted to take in college. I also think it is awesome that the school cares so much about teaching students about the impact of their work on society! Once I visited Mudd, met some of the students, and saw the awesome community, I knew I really wanted to come here!
What surprised you about Mudd?: I was surprised by just how kind and supportive Mudders truly are! Every time I’ve been stuck on homework or had a question about something going on at Mudd, I have been overwhelmed by the number of people who offered to help when I ask. Although I already knew before coming to Mudd how awesome the people were going to be, I was still surprised by the extent to which people look out for and care about each other.
Hometown: Seattle, WA
High school: Seattle Academy
Major: Computer Science
Why Mudd?: In the “Why Mudd” essay I sent to Harvey Mudd four years ago, I wrote: “Mudders are quirky and interesting but still shake your hand with confidence. They are passionate engineers who also enjoy spending time out and about, away from their dimly lit rooms and computer screens.” Although I wish I’d reined in some of my imagery, I still very much believe in these words. Mudd’s strength is its student body, and the strength of the student body stems from our passion for the sciences AND the humanities AND life in general.
What surprised you about Mudd?: I expected Mudd to be hard. I did not expect Mudd to challenge me in the excruciating way that it has, in a way which has made me more thoughtful and permanently shifted my worldview.
Hometown: Marietta, GA
High school: Walton High School
Major: Mathematical and Computational Biology
Why Mudd?: I wanted to push myself in a place where my professors believed in my intellectual capabilities and trusted me, and I wanted a community where everyone loved science, but not just science, as much as I did.
What surprised you about Mudd?: I was surprised by how quickly and intensely friendships form here!
Hometown: Evanston, IL
High school: Evanston Township High School
Why Mudd?: I chose Mudd because it is a liberal arts college and part of the consortium. I love that along side my STEM education I’m also getting to take humanities courses and utilize the resources that the other colleges have to offer. By the end of sophomore year I had already taken a class at each of the 5 colleges.
What surprised you about Mudd?: I was definitely surprised at how outgoing so many Mudders are and I really appreciate that. I didn’t have a sense for what the student body would be like before coming here but I was really happy that so many people are unapologetically themselves and that everyone is so supportive of each other embracing their individuality.
Hometown: Shanghai, China
High school: Shanghai American School
Why Mudd?: I chose Mudd because I wanted a small tight knit community that would support my passion for biomedical engineering while also pushing me to grow and explore the humanities
What surprised you about Mudd?: I was surprised by committed everyone was to upholding the honor code. It amazed me how everyone wanted to support each other in keeping ourselves accountable.
Hometown: Forest Hill, TX
High school: Robert L Paschal High School
Major: Computer Science
Why Mudd?: I come from a low-income background and wanted to go to a school where I felt I could learn a lot for the career I was going as well as have decent financial aid so that I wouldn’t have to be stressed about paying for my higher education.
What surprised you about Mudd?: I was a surprised by how difficult the classes were, it was much more difficult than anything I had ever experienced in high school, but I’m thankful because they allowed me to learn and grow quite a bit.
Harvey Mudd College
301 Platt Blvd.
Claremont, CA 91711
Thinking of applying?
International Students and Scholars
Welcome to Harvey Mudd College! The International Student and Scholars Office supports and helps the international community at Harvey Mudd College. ISS provides information and resources for students to thrive academically, culturally and socially.
Harvey Mudd is home to international students from over 32 countries and growing! We seek to improve campus climate by positively impacting our campus community through the inclusion of the cultural heritage of all our international students and scholars. We strive to raise awareness about critical issues facing our international students and scholars, providing support, while also fostering a community that celebrates their individuality and resiliency at Mudd.
The International Students and Scholars Office at Harvey Mudd College develops, promotes and supports a welcoming environment for international students by providing advising, programming and support.
We seek to improve campus climate by positively impacting our campus community through the inclusion of the cultural heritage of all our international students and scholars. We strive to raise awareness about critical issues facing out international students and scholars, providing support, while also fostering a community that celebrates the individuality and resiliency at Mudd.
- Students will have the opportunity to define their identity in relation to cultural and social differences, while also understanding the impact of being an international student and scholar in the United States.
- Students will be able to gain foundational knowledge of the US visa process while also navigating the ever changing policies.
- Students will have the opportunity to engage in community building while gaining support systems through cross cultural experiences.